Last Thursday evening, Ballinamallard Utd were back on the training pitch after the Northern Ireland Executive gave ‘elite’ status to the Irish Cup competition.
Before the 23-player squad could hit the hallowed turf of Ferney Park though, the very important matter of Covid tests had to be carried out on players and coaching staff.
“You’re sitting there and you’re hoping it’s a straight line, those are wee things that are not the norm” says Ballinamallard manager, Harry McConkey.
But after 14 weeks of no football due to restrictions, he admits some people were a little apprehensive about it all.
“Some of the players and coaches, who you’d think would be well used to dealing with situations of planning and everything else, they had a wee nerve in their tummies because they had been away so long.
McConkey acknowledges there is a bit of rustiness after the long lay-off though.
“We had to do a bit of fitness monitoring on the night, so it was a tough enough evening for some of the boys. We have just realised where they’re at, it’s one thing out running on your own or with a friend but it’s another thing in their groups of five working, it was tough you know.
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Posted: 4:58 pm April 10, 2021